Labour's Intolerance Of Criticism Crosses Line
Labour's Intolerance Of Criticism Crosses The Boundary Line
The debacle over the Centre for Strategic Studies reveals Labour's increasingly rigid and punitive attitude to those who dare criticise or even question it, says United Future leader, Hon Peter Dunne.
"Early in its life, this Government aroused surprise and criticism for the harshness of its attacks on those who opposed it, as its early skirmishes with those who fought the renationalisation of ACC and employment law changes showed."
"Labour's approach was exemplified by Dr Cullen's infamous 'we won, you lost: eat that ' line."
"However, that 'attack is the best form of defence' attitude has now given way to fully fledged vindictiveness towards those who raise their heads above the parapet, as the current witch hunts over defence critics and those opposing the waste of $80 million on a toy bank for Mr Anderton show."
"It is a far cry from Phil Goff's passionate advocacy of 'whistle blowers' like Neil Pugmire when in Opposition a couple of short years ago."
"Robust political debate is the hallmark of an open and democratic society and is a value to be cherished."
"However, such debate will be stifled if it is to be accompanied by the real prospect of retribution against those who dare utter a different opinion."
"Sadly, that is the path we are now descending upon."
"The irony is that such intolerance has hitherto been the preserve of the tyrants like Robert Mugabe and George Speight this Government has railed against."
"Now, by its actions, it seems determined to join them," Mr Dunne says.